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Match Report


Posted Wed 17 Jul 13 at 06:02 AM

Lewis Grabban scored the only goal of the game as the Cherries beat FA Cup holders Wigan Athletic on a wet afternoon at the Goldsands Stadium.

Grabban collected James Perch’s underhit backpass and found the net with a cool finish to put the hosts in front just before half-time.

Brett Pitman then had a penalty saved at the start of the second half before substitute Callum McManaman was sent off as the Cherries recorded their second Championship win of the season.

The game’s main talking point was whether the England under-21 international should have been shown a red card, but it shouldn’t detract from a dominant performance from Eddie Howe’s team that perhaps merited a more comfortable margin.

It took less than 60 seconds for the Cherries to create the first chance of the game as Ryan Fraser collected a loose ball and played in Grabban.

The in-form forward went one-on-one with Scott Carson, but aimed his left footed shot too close to the England goalkeeper and James McArthur was left to carry the ball out of defence.

James McCarthy then sent in an effort from distance for the Latics, which was pushed over by Ryan Allsop, before Ben Watson guided a header wide from close range.

As the game unfolded and the rain eased off, it appeared there was little between the two teams and that chances would be few and far between.

However, the Cherries looked most likely to open the scoring and only a brave block could deny Pitman his first goal of the season when he sent a shot towards goal after getting on the end of a trademark corner routine.

Howe’s team did take the lead three minutes before half-time when Grabban latched on to a loose back pass and kept his cool to slide the ball under Carson’s body. 

However, the Latics number one made amends just after the restart when he saved Pitman’s penalty.

The striker had been brought down in the box by Jean Beausejour and stepped up to take the spot kick, but Carson guessed right way to push away the effort.

The incident gave the visitors a renewed hope, only for the balance of the game to change once again when McManaman was sent off only a few minutes after coming on to the pitch for a reckless tackle on Pitman.

Owen Coyle’s team rallied with ten men and fortunately Marc Pugh was well placed to turn away Leon Barnett’s header with just over 20 minutes left to play.

It appeared one goal would be enough for the Cherries, while Grabban would need to go for broke to find a way back into the game.

Emmerson Boyce looped a header over the crossbar, but Carson was the busier ‘keeper and had to be alert to get a touch on Pitman’s lob from a quickly taken free-kick.

Shaun Maloney hit the wall with an injury time free kick, but the diving tackle made by Pitman to stop Ben Watson’s follow up captured the Cherries’ determination and fight on another memorable afternoon at the Goldsands Stadium.

Cherries: Allsop, Francis, Ward, Cook, Harte, Fraser (Thomas 79), MacDonald, Arter, Pugh (Elphick 90), Pitman, Grabban.

Unused substitutes: Flahavan, Surman, O’Kane, McDermott, Stockley.

Goal: Grabban (42)

Booked: Harte, Allsop, Francis, Pitman

Wigan: Carson, Boyce, Perch, Barnett, Crainey, Maloney, McArhur (McManaman 55), Watson, McCarthy, Beausejour (McClean 55), Holt (Fortune 65).

Unused substitutes: Nicholls, McCann, Gomez, Espinoza.

Booked: McClean, Beausejour

Sent off: McManaman

Attendance: 9,097 (including 689 Wigan supporters)

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